Issue 007 SEP 2013

Page 1

kind of

有点 ISSUE 007 - SEP / 2013

Editorial “Kind of”- A phrase used to express an act not really done, or in plausible deniability This issue is named after a rather funny event that took place while I was in China, visiting Mesum Verma. An “afterparty” incident. It’s fall season and time to take those festive breaks and have fun. Okay, if you love riding bikes, there is no season that should ever deter you. If you don’t, then start. This issue we show you the humanitarian side of legend’s like Hans Rey and how they do their part to make the world a better place. We teach you how to get your body positioning basics right so you can shred harder this winter. Some cool ice from iXS to keep you in one piece. A story about two riders who rode 8,800km across South East Asia just to make people believe in riding bikes. News from the Nine Knights, world championships, the Mongolian Bike Challenge and of course some sneak peeks of my Chinese Adventure and much more! So go out there! Ride some new lines, take some new drops, get some air time. Even if you crash, you can say, “I kind of landed that one!!” Ride On! Keep it Real!! (not kind of)

Prateek Singh – editor in chief PHOTO : matt macdonald RIDER : prateek singh

7 e u s s I

Rider : Johannes Grund Photo : Mesum Verma

Issue 7



Riding out of poverty, from kenya to eden (hans rey)


tricknology - proper basic body positioning


Angie hohenwarter interview




whats upp!! Turahalli DH, enduro, worlds and more


26“, 27,5“ or 29“


garage - how to keep your bike dialed


Review - ixs trail rs, carve and flow


in search for the global cyclist





mesum verma photography

Riding out of Poverty, from Kenya to Eden.

words and photos by Carmen Freeman-Rey

It had been four years since Hans and I visited East Africa on a Wheels 4 Life trip. January 2008 saw us travelling to Tanzania, circumnavigating Kilimanjaro on our bicycles and focusing our Wheels 4 Life attention on the Ugweno Valley where we distributed a number of bicycles. In 2009 we followed up giving away more bikes, opening a bicycle repair shop and we completed our film, which covered the trips. At this time Wheels 4 Life was a fledgling charity, just starting out at that point, we knew we had a lot to learn and our Tanzania journey set the foundations for the direction we would choose to take our charity. Neither of us had any real comprehension of what lay ahead for us, or how lucky we would come to feel to be in the position of being able to do the work we are doing.

It was abundantly clear to Hans and I that it was absolutely time for us to visit east Africa again, this time Kenya and Uganda where we have given away a couple of thousand bikes already. Our mission was to meet many of our Project Leaders in the field, a lot of our previous bike recipients to monitor first hand the impact the bicycles have had on their lives and give a whole lot more away at the same time, 270 bikes to be precise.

If Darwin’s theory of evolution concluded that the fittest would survive, we believe that it is the moral duty of the fittest to help those less strong to survive. Exhausting, hot, dusty, indescribably bad roads, cold showers, cockroaches the size of rats; that’s the negative.

Gratitude, love, happy faces, hugs and witnessing the incredible difference our bicycles have made; that’s the positive.After a journey that saw us fly from California to Kenya via Amsterdam, we finally arrived late at night in Nairobi. We were greeted by our Kenyan driver, fixer and security, Johnnie.

I felt a little alarmed when approaching our hotel when first we had to negotiate concrete chicanes and armed guards just to get into the car park. Then faced with full airport type security with our bags X-rayed and us swiped with metal detectors just to get to the reception.

Another 5 electronic gates and various locks before we could enter our room instilled in me a sense that we should watch our backs and our bags. Our first full day began with our cameraman Rob meeting us at breakfast straight from England. He came along to cover our journey on film as

a follow up to our 2009 movie “Wheels 4 Life, A Story about Giving�. A quick cup of tea and we hit the road with Johnnie in his trusted Toyota to an area called Ndeiya north east of Nairobi. We were meeting up with some of our project leaders and one of them was Bishop Francis Kamau.

At Ndeiya we were able to meet a boy named Sami. When Sami was 9 his Father died leaving him with a Mother who had a breakdown, a disabled sister and another sister who was still a baby. He became the sole provider for his family; he did this by fetching water or firewood for his

neighbors in return for a small fee. Now Sami is 13 and still going to school despite the daily challenges that face him. We gave him a bike, now he can carry more water and firewood for his neighbors in a fraction of the time as a result his daily income has increased four fold.

After another night in Nairobi we headed west in the direction of Kisumu, after approximately 200 km we arrived at a remote village, Solei, which is near Nakuru. In Solei we distributed another 30 bikes. These aren’t roads you drive on here, they are deeply rutted dirt tracks.

the crew is working, he explained that at the moment it is not so far from his home, only 4 miles, but his last job was 12 miles away. I asked him if his son would follow him into the building industry, he said “Oh no, I’m working so that I can pay for his education and he can have a better job, a better life”. But without a doubt this journey was made pretty special when we came across animals that we normally associate with nature reserves. Zebra were calmly crossing the main highway, is this what they mean by “Zebra Crossing”? To our left were Wilderbeast and Antelope, to our right Giraffe munching on trees. The Orucho Hills Center have received 450 bicycles from us over the years.

One of them was Simon, we found him on a building site in Ngugi. Simon suffered a stroke 10 years ago and we could see that he had restricted use in his left arm and leg, but that doesn’t stop him from riding a bike or working. He uses his bicycle to get to the construction site wherever

Mud hut, giant cockroaches, spider nests, a toilet that I will leave to your imagination and an electrical storm cracking above the tin roof right above our heads. Sleeping was not easy. These trips make you appreciate the simple pleasures in life so much more, a warm shower, a tap you can simply turn on and a comfy bed. Ecstasy, I think that is what we all felt that night when we rested our weary heads on a soft hotel pillow. As suspected the next drive

took longer than we were informed, but we were horror struck when the line of lorries spread out before us farther than the eye could see. 7km to border said the Tom Tom. Somehow the driver helped us get to the other side of the line of halted trucks using his Rally Car driver like skills.

We were finally in Uganda and on our way. We rattled, bounced and groaned our way at the rapid speed of 20 mph to the Sipi River Lodge situated 1795m up Mount Elgon. Close your eyes and imagine a verdant countryside, lush and vibrant, water thundering down from high falls and then flowing into a river

where it gently cascades over rocks, to us it was the embodiment of the Garden of Eden. Our travels have taken Hans and I to some truly spectacular places, this was one of them. We were more than ready to get our boots on and Hans’ bike out and head for the slopes of the mountain. Time to get the camera out and Hans to get into action. The bike for this trip at that time, new top-secret GT Sensor 650B. This was the only such bike out there and we had to keep it under wraps while we filmed and photographed it. He wants to explore the amazing trails that our world has to offer in the pursuit of the ultimate rides. Well both he and I were officially in heaven. Hans ever the professional, game to give anything a go no matter how wet, slippery or out and out sketchy my chosen shot location could be. Before we knew it, darkness descended and we had a steep climb down for Rob our cameraman and me and a ride down for Hans. Piece of cake for Hans, he doesn’t need light, he senses the lines of the trail by some kind of osmosis.

Indeed the view out back from our terrace was of the cascading waters in their magnificent glory. A beautiful evening was rounded off with us drying our shoes by the fire whilst enjoying a shepherd’s pie and a glass of wine. Life felt good. Equipment ready, bikes checked over,

stomachs full of eggs and bacon, we loaded our bikes into the 4 x 4 and shuttled to the top of one of the many plateaus on Mt. Elgon. Even though a bicycle is a form of transportation used globally, you have to understand that the people on the mountain had never seen a bicycle likes Hans’ GT Sensor.

Mt. Elgon is a huge volcano, with a diameter of 80 km across, it stands at 4,321m or 14, 177’ above sea level, it also has one of the biggest intact calderas on the planet and it is the largest and oldest solitary volcano in east Africa. It was at this point that Hans said

“Oh cool, what an awesome view, let’s take some shots here”. What he was suggesting was to ride along the edge of the steep cliff with the waterfall and epic panorama in the background. It was here that the only two tourists we saw on the whole trip happened to be sitting and

taking in the view. “Are you mad?” they asked. Good question and even though I know after all these years to trust that Hans knows his limits, it is sometimes hard to switch off from being his wife and thus being terrified for his safety. One slip, one wobble and it would all be over, lights out

and goodbye world. But I also understand that this stuff thrills Hans and is part of his make-up. . I had to get my professional head on, adjust the light, frame the shot and direct, not think about what Hans is doing, and just think about getting the shot. On we went through tiny villages where the inhabitants waved and cheered and seemed quite happy that we were taking over their little trails and taking photos, Hans skidding through the berms and kicking up the dust. Hans stopped suddenly and said “yeah”, I caught up and saw what he was looking at, a fallen tree lying across the river creating a perfect natural bridge and giving Hans the opportunity to implement some of his trials riding skills. Big kid that he is sometimes, he put smiles on all the children watching him balance and counter balance as he kept his line above the water.

Sipi gave us a chance to re-group, charge up equipment, wash our clothes and get a couple of good nights sleep. All very necessary for soon we would be on the road again, this time heading to Kampala the capital of Uganda and a meeting with our next Wheels 4 Life project leader, Agnes at ARUWE, Action

This time it was time to hit the Busi Island in Lake Victoria, the second largest lake in the world. The drive was worth it, this day turned out be one that is unforgettable. Arriving at the Mabamba landing site, Hans, Rob, Suzanne our cocoordinator and I climbed into a long canoe fitted with an outboard motor. Above us Kingfishers and Weaver Birds flew and we were instructed to look out for the Shoebill, which is apparently near to extinction.

for the Rural Empowerment of Women. I am always pretty certain I can trust the people we work with, but you can’t beat actually meeting them in person and in their own environment. Speaking with the people that actually have benefited from our Bikes is also invaluable.

Minutes later Hans and I entered a larger room filled with seated people holding homemade banners saying thank you. Thank you to Wheels 4 Life and to the many people that they know have donated to us and thus have made it possible for them to have bikes. “The Government gave us 5 bicycles and up until this day Wheels 4 Life have given us 89�.

Time for a little Hans magic. One of the many great things about Hans and his bike is that as soon as he gets on it and starts pulling his wheelies and back wheels hops, people are delighted and excited. “He is very good at this” a few people said to me in all seriousness, “Yes, I explained that is his job”, you can imagine the strange looks I got at that comment. Today we were going to go to Kyankwanzi, 252 km north east of Kampala. Thankfully this road was a nice road, we really came to appreciate tarmac on this trip because it was so elusive. Friday was race day; pulling into the compound of a school we could see 40 new bikes lined up, numbered and ready to go home with their selected owners. Alongside them were a good few bikes that we had given before in 2011. Hans was getting his race face on. We mentioned that we had prizes, that upped the excitement level, the prospect of winning some Adidas sunglasses (top 3) and various treats for the other participants really made them competitive. The Kyankwanzians really know

how to pedal….fast. And the race was won by the gentleman in the pink shirt, we aren’t including Hans in the line – up, that wouldn’t be fair. On our last day in Uganda, we joined forces with Jude and visited several homes in the far spread remote villages

delivering bikes. These people didn’t know they were getting a bike. We have now come full circle, the question at the beginning is now at the end; “can we make a difference, are we??” Oh yes, absolutely we can and are. “Give a bike change a life” We need you, they need you, can’t do it without you.

Riding a bike is all about having fun. But when It comes to riding well, pushing hard, you need proper body positioning. A wrong position will not let you ride on a level you wish to push your riding to. Here are the basics. RIDER: Mesum Verma PHOTOS: Matt MacDonald TEXT: Prateek Singh




ic B ody Pos itio nin g


While riding straight you want to pedal efficiently and fast. Keeping your body in the proper position also helps you in not damaging your back. Grab the bars near the end, (no hands hanging outside). Maintain a calm position on the saddle, Feet should be on the pedals in a proper way. (the front half of the foot to be firmly positioned on the pedal. The back should be directly on the centre of gravity of the bike, which is the bottom bracket of your bike.

RIDING UPHILL While riding uphill, you need to maintain stability in both wheels and have a constant cadence. The moment you lose any of those, you will have to stop and get off the bike. While climbing, try to remain seated on the saddle, keep the back arched over the top tube, the chin vertical to the stem. Elbows should be bent and cadence should be constant. If you move too much to the back, your front wheel will lose traction while negotiating over rocks and roots. If you move too much to the front, your rear wheel will lose traction and spin freely if there is loose rock or gravel. You need to find the perfect balance between the front and the back finding the perfect center of gravity.

RIDING DOWNHILL Downhill riding is something that requires more training to refine the skills. If done properly, even the steepest of the trails can be mastered. We show you on a paved staircase to exhibit exactly how the body position should be. While riding down, you need to shift your weight a bit to the back of the bike. Depending upon the gradient of the steepness, your back should be more towards the rear. Your inner thighs should be wrapped around the saddle in order to steer the back and your arms should be extended. Elbows slightly bent, and the face looking up. Practice this on less steeper trails to gain confidence before hitting the steep ones.

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Enlighten us with a few words about yourself. I started riding my bike at the age of 9, first I competed in XC racing, but then it got too boring for me so I switched to downhill 2004. In 2006 I also started competing in 4X. For two years now I‘ve been really living my dream of riding my bike around the world, do more free riding and less racing, photo shoots for Sponsors, Magazines, camps with Ladies/Youths, Videos ... so it never get’s boring. Mountain biking is a passion for me, there are no words to describe it, it´s simply there. For the upcoming years I want to stay healthy, ride my bike all over the World, share my passion with others, plan some big Projects and just have fun.

How did it all begin and when did you know you were going to take it up as a profession? It was my Daddy´s fault that I started riding, he always took my brother to Races and I was jealous, so finally he let me race. That happened nearly 19 years ago.

Why 4x?

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4X is one of my favorite discipline, cause I like to race against in battles till the finish line. It’s more exciting then just have an timed run down the mountain.

Other disciplines you love. I like Freeride, cause for me it is the essence of pure Mountainbike riding, like riding trails, bikepark, pumptrack, hike&ride… it´s the best mix and you can discover a lot.

Do you get Goosebumps before a major event? Goosebumps less but still when I´m at the start my heart is beating really hard, after so many years of racing there is still a lot excitement before the start. But I think that’s good cause otherwise there is no more fun to ride and compete at Events.

First bike you ever owned? Oh god, don´t remind me of this one ;) It was an 25kg heavy purple, black, yellow CATS Bike - good on downhill but hard to ride uphill.

re t ba ju lie n to : ph o

Relax and hang out with friends, between all the travelling it´s just great to have a day to reset body & mind.


Apart from riding bikes what would you choose to do on a perfect day?

Tell us a bit about your achievements in biking. 4th Place 4x Worldcup Schladming/AUT, 5th Place 4x Worldcup Bromont/CAN, 5th Place European Championship, Austrian 4x Champion, Austrian XC Champion and Vice Champion several times.

Worst experience on a mountain bike? Crashing and get injured. It’s tough to come back from an Injury and get the feeling and the trust back for your Bike.

What is biking to you? Biking for me is an passion, means a lot to me. When I look back I already had such an amazing time with traveling, discover new places, ride bikes, meeting friends… I was very lucky to slide in this Chapter, can’t imagine what to do without biking. Very thankful and happy.

Do you have any inspirational women riders who inspire you to ride harder? I think every Women rider is an Inspiration; everyone has something you can look up to.

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Favorite trails? Backyard Trails

Favorite food? Sushi and of course Grandmothers kitchen.

Favorite tunes? Everything that ROCKS : )

What outfit do you prefer when not on your bike? Girly or tomboyish? Depends on the situation, mix everything a bit but more the comfy outfit.

If the world ends, and you survive but are allowed to keep only one bike, which one would it be? My YT Industries – Noton!

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My family.


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Most important thing to you in this world?

Ever ridden in India? What do you think of the biking scene here? No never! I would love to discover one day this amazing country! I think in India the scene is growing, you hear more and more from there and I´m sure it´s an awesome place to ride.

What do you think of the Mighty Himalayas? High, big, scary ;)

Any mantras or quotes you live by? Do what you love and what makes you happy!

Any last words for the shredders in this country?

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Keep on shredding have fun and enjoy Life! in



rider: florent telliez â?˜ photo: fred bonnefoy

rider: mesum verma â?˜ photo: deng yu

rider: johannes fischbach â?˜ photo: lars scharl

rider: johannes grund â?˜ photo: mesum verma

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A peek into what's going on in the Biking world, national and worldwide ...

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Racing and Events

pouring down from the trails!! downhill@turahalli

Photos & Text: Rakesh Oswal

The Turahalli Downhill Race was the event which made me wait for two long months. I was really excited to go to Bangalore, to cover the event behind the lens. My parents, who had never before let me to for a sleepover at a fiend‘s place , somehow allowed me for this journey. The adventure started from Pune with Piyush Chavan, Ajay Padval and Yash Paranjpe. We reached the “Majestic road” the next morning. After getting off the bus, Instead of checking in to a hotel, we directly headed towards the track with empty stomachs but minds full of curiosity and excitement. Soon the riders prepped up their bikes and started the practice sessions. I was with my camera, and moved up on the hills with them. The weather was relatively “cool”. So i brought out my camera and started shooting the action when suddenly the heavens opened up and it began to pour heavily.

I struggled but managed to capture as many shots as possible. The second day’s practice runs started at 6 am. We were so excited that we just brushed our teeth and ate a little breakfast and we were good to go. We reached the track once again. It seemed like it was going to be another rainy day but luckily it did not rain.

The mountain bikers were really very energetic and the track was buzzing with activity. They trained hard; I was on the hill clicking pictures from various parts of the track. Moving up and down was just like travelling a plain road. The track was not very steep but looked fun. Every biker at the starting line was carrying a different expression on his face. If someone was happy, the other was pretty much tensed. It looked like a team; a team of enthusiastic bikers, from different regions of the country. Every single participant had the winning spirit , with one aim in their mind. Getting the best time they could clock. By closing their eyes, all were trying to attain peace of mind before their run. Most riders completed the track and few tried to clear the jump at the end of the track. That seemed to be the main attraction for the spectators. The atmosphere was friendly and all in all the second practice day went pretty smooth.

And finally it was the day, the day of the final race. The hill was crawling with photographers and the spectators of all age groups. It started early in the morning, it was a fresh day. The riders had waited long for this day and they were really excited. Everyone had a big smile on their face, and was wishing they would take the win. The race track was well built. The management was pretty neat too; there were volunteers standing at every 100 metres. In case, if anything went wrong. From the top of the track, the panoramic view of the surrounding was just terrific. Each person on the top of the hill was busy doing something, like checking their bikes, padding up, meditating or praying. And the qualification round began, the whistle blew and the riders channeled their full energy towards the finish line . Following the bikers and capturing those action moments, I did not even realise that the final round had already begun. Few riders had minor crashes in between but the willingness to complete the race made them continue regardless. Finally, I reached near the finish line near the “big jump�, only few riders could jump off the ramp, the rest rode through the track beside that ramp.

The finish line was approximately 50 metres away from the ramp. The adrenaline was rushing and timers were going off as each rider crossed the line. Now, it was the time for the declaration of the winner. Fingers crossed by the riders, Champagne for the winner and the medal for the runner ups were waiting. Piyush Chavan was winner, followed by who was just a split and Gautam Taode. Champagne popped tions were on!

declared the Vinay Menon, secont behind and celebra-

Everyone seemed to have a good day. It was a very special moment for the winner, runner ups and the participants. They had worked really hard from past many years and it was a successful event. I felt that it was an unforgettable time in Bangalore, the struggle and hard work I did was worth coming to Bangalore and having such a good experience and fun over there. I am eagerly waiting for the next event as I will be developing my skills and avoiding mistakes to make the photographs better. Bangalore memories are going to stay for long in my head.

Jerome Clementz rules at Val D’Isere The mountain threw everything it had at racers and organizers during the sixth round of the Enduro World Series, held in the French Alps at Val d‘Isere this weekend, including snow, an apocalyptic alpine storm, rolling fog, mud and sunshine, in equal measure. The godfather of enduro mountain bike racing, and host for this round, Tribe Events‘ Fred Glo, declared it to be one of the hardest weekends ever in the ten years he has been organizing enduro in the high mountains, offering thanks to the riders for adapting to the schedule and race modifications required to redress the wild weather.

Photos: Matt Wrag

Enduro World Series Managing Director Chris Ball says: „Enduro is a wild and challenging discipline in often wild and challenging environments. It was a savagely hard race for everyone, but that makes it all the more worthwhile.“

After 1 hour and 7 minutes of intense racing in constantly changing conditions, the battle was finally declared for French enduro champion Jerome Clementz (Cannondale Overmountain) (1h07:03:711), with Australia‘s Jared Graves (Yeti Fox) just 11 seconds behind (1h07:15:457), after making an epic recovery in the final stage to regain ground lost from a crash in stage 3. The third fastest time overall was logged by Belgium‘s Martin Maes (GT Factory Racing) (1h07:32:617) who proved that he‘s not only the dominant force in the Junior race, but can match his pace with the open field. The Men‘s podium was rounded out by France‘s Fabien Barel (Canyon Factory) with a combined time of 1h07:35:437. The women‘s race was a back-and-forth duel between the UK‘s Tracy Moseley (Trek Factory Racing) and France‘s Anne Caroline Chausson (Ibis) with Chausson finally taking the win by a 17 second margin after Moseley incurred a time penalty.

Mongolia BikeBike Challenge Mongolia Challenge One of the world’s most spectacuOne of the world’s most spectacular lar and most grueling mountain and most grueling mountain bike stagestage racesraces kicked off on 30th bike kicked offthe on the of August 2013!! The 7-day, 850km 30th of August 2013!!, the 7-day, (528 miles) Genco Mongolia Bike 850km (528 miles) Genco MongoChallenge! lia Bike Challenge! The Mongolia Bike Challenge takes The Mongolia Challenge place on theBike vast, lonely, and isolated expanse referred to as the takes place on the vast, lonely, Steppes, where Genghis Khan to and and isolated expanse referred his army once galloped in conquest. as108 the Steppes, where23Genghis riders from countries are headed to Mongolia to test Khan and his army once galloped theriders wild, remote, inthemselves conquest.in108 from 23and stunning beauty of the Mongolian countries headed to This Mongolia Outback. are What started event tohas testmorphed themselves the wild, reinto in become a ‘must do’ onand the stunning international MTBofstage mote, beauty the race calendar. Mongolian Outback. What startedThis event has morphed into become a ‘must do’ on the international MTB stage race calendar.

The stages!! Stage 1: The Kings Stage 120km with 2900m (9,514 feet) of climbing Stage 2: The Jalman Stage 126km with 2240m (7,349 feet) of climbing Stage 3: The Khan Khentii Stage 148km with 2000m (6,561 feet) of climbing Stage 4: The Marathon Queen’s Stage 175km with 2540m (8,333 feet) of climbing Stage 5: The Time Trial 45km with 1000m (3,280 feet) of climbing Stage 6: The Nomad’s Steppe Stage 167km with 1730m (5,675 feet) of climbing Stage 7: The Great Chinggis Empire Stage 86km with 1486m (4,875 feet) of climbing

Best of luck to all adventurous souls competing!

Greg Minnaar wins the world championships at Pietermaritzburg South Africa!

Photos: Rob Jones

South African rider Greg Minnaar flying to victory on home soil

The big boys at the podium

Greg Minnaar won the World Championships at Pietermaritzburg, to a cheering home crowd with an astonishing time of 3.58.058 followed by Sick Mick Hannah in second position with a time of 3.58.454! And Jared Graves took 3rd position with a time of 4.01.391 and that too on his 180mm Enduro Rig!!

Not all of the race favorites made it onto the podium, though, including Sam Hill, who had a ground-shaking crash, washing out towards the bottom of the course, and Steve Smith, who bobbled a corner high up on the track, squashing his chances of taking the win.

Jared Graves killing it on his enduro bike

Who, if not Rachel? Rachel Atherton has been unstoppable this season, riding from one victory to another, she has deservingly been crowned Downhill World Champion after another successful race at the UCI MTB World Championships in South Africa. This is already her third World Championship title following Livigno in 2005 (Junior Women) and Val Di Sole in 2008 (Elite Women).

After working hard to overcome persistent injuries, Rachel Atherton fought relentlessly to get back on top of her game. Determined, focused and in great shape – her efforts have been paid off with the ultimate reward! The women’s podium was taken by Rachel Atherton, getting her, her first World Champ Victory in 5 years! Followed by Emmeline Ragot and Tracey Hannah!! Photos: Sven Martin

Defending champion Nino Schurter mounted successful defences of his cross country title at the 2013 UCI World Championships in Pietermaritzburg, South Africa

Photos: Armin M. K端stenbr端ck

Nino gracefully riding over the rock garden

„My goal was to start with a really fast first lap,“ revealed Schurter. „I was expecting a big battle with Julien, but he was not able to go with me, so by the first half lap I had a gap. After that I was able to ride my own pace and not go into the red zone, so it was perfect. I know I can do well on this course, and I had a good feeling all week, so I came into the race with confidence.“

Defending world champion Nino Schurter took home another World Championship win this year with a time of 1hr,40min,17seconds! Nino ripped the XC course with style and beat Manuel Fumic by 7minutes and Jose Hermida Ramos by 21minutes!! 1 Nino Schurter (SUI) 1hr 40min 17sec 2 Manuel Fumic (GER) 0:00:07 3 José Hermida Ramos (ESP) 0:00:21 Photos: Michele Mondini

The women’s podium was taken by yet another defending champ Julia Bresset with a time of 1hr40min,54seconds followed by Maja Wloszczowska and Esther Süss.

1 Julie Bresset (FRA) 1hr42min54sec 2 Maja Wloszczowska (POL) 0:00:04 3 Esther Süss (SUI) 0:01:06 Photos: Michele Mondini


Kolkata Police passed a bill to Ban Cycling in the City. The City of Joy plans to turn riders into rebels and criminals. KOLKATA: The city police have barred bicycles from 174 thoroughfares - a blanket ban in effect - catching cyclists unawares and leaving green activists aghast. While advocates of the humble bicycle point out its environmentfriendliness and health benefits and seek separate tracks - which are the global norm - instead of a ban, Kolkata Police cites the immense vehicular pressure on city roads and cyclists‘ safety to argue their case. „Bicycles and other non-motorised vehicles put great pressure on the city‘s troubled traffic situation,“ pointed out DC (traffic)

Dilip Adak.

Apart from the handful of riders who ride to train or for leisure, there are thousands who earn their bread because of their bicycles, It is an indispensable mode of transport to them. The police are either impounding their bicycles or charging a 100INR fine to these poor people who perhaps earn that much after a hard day of toiling. Their bicycles is what supports their livelihood.



are protesting and fighting for The number of cyc- Riders their rights to ride bikes. This Ban is not lists is 11% whereas feasible at all. cars only comprise of There is a mass rally called 8% of vehicular “Cycle Satyagraha” is being held on Sunday, 8th traffic!! The blanket ban is the most senseless thing ever. In this day where the city is choking with pollution and heat levels rising, banning the most efficient and environment friendly mode of transport is a suicide mission for the city.

September to get rid of this Ban once and for all.

If the ban is not lifted, then we are afraid the future of India is bleak!



Photos: David Malacrida

After most of the mountainbiker’s focus at the start of the week was directed towards progressing tricks on the superkicker, the awesome Freeride Section at the FIAT Nine Knights has now been thoroughly tested. The athletes charged the eight obstacle from top to bottom and during the sunset hip session some of them already boosted to possible record heights.

of the entire course. Not only the riders have been pushing each other to progress, but also the invited professional photographers are relentlessly chasing the best shot to win the Photo Contest by Killer Loop at the end of the week. Some photographers spared no efforts, like Markus Greber (GER) who even dug holes alongside the course to reach the best angle for his pictures.

So far the trick-trio Wrobel, Godziek and Gulevich have been rousing the most cheers from athletes and the media. With a Tuck-No-Hander on the intimidating Smith Canon Tobi Wrobel once again proved that the Nine Knights Playground is like his second home. Szymon Godziek has easily been the trickmaster of the event so far and Geoff Gulevich´s massive airs almost projected him into orbit.

On Saturday the riders will showcase their skills to everybody at the Public Contest Day. After being awarded wildcards a few extra riders like Tomas Zejda (CZ), Linus Sjöholm (SWE) und Bienvenido Aguado (ESP), will join the Nine Knights to compete with them here in Livigno. It will be one hell of a spectacle so grab your bike, come up to Mottolino Fun Mountain for a great Contest-Weekend and a legendary Afterparty!

The heli-day has definitely been the FIAT Nine Knights highlight so far. Within two 90-minute-long sessions of bright sun and no wind, photographers and the filmer inside of the Flying Bulls Helicopter had ideal conditions for exceptional footage

Schedule Contest Day September 7th: * 10.00 - 11.00 Training * 11.00 - 12.30 Qualification, Big Air Kicker * 13.00 - 14.30 Finals * 14.45 Flower Ceremony * ab 21.00 Afterparty Miky’s Pub

Is the 26” wheel really going to be extinct?! Looking at the vastly growing number of 29” and 27.5” (or 650B) wheeled bikes coming out, we were forced to ask a question we feared to ask ourselves. Were the rumors true?! Is the good ol 26” dying out or is it just another major marketing strategy. When the 29” wheel came out, it had Text: Prateek Singh Photos: Trek Bikes

a purpose. The 29” and the 26” were two distinct entities and completely different work fields. The advent of the devilish 27.5” wheel is what has got us worried. Said to be the “best of both worlds”, most bike brands are turning their rigs to 650B versions. And its not just one

discipline, and it’s not just the XC, the 650B bug has infested the Downhill, Enduro and Freeride segment too! We are not arguing that they all have their advantages but is it right to put the 26” wheel in the shadows? With Pro riders winning world cups on them and more people going crazy about

them, the question still remains… is it the extra money you spend for a new bike with 650B wheels that makes you a faster rider or is it the skills that you have acquired over the years? The thing to worry about is, will the 26” wheel become history, forcing us all to change everything we love about riding?! WE HOPE NOT!

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Text: Prateek Singh Photos: Mesum Verma Photography

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How to Keep your Bike Dialed

A simple guide to routine checkups to keep your ride smoother, last for more rides and happy.

It’s more than the usual cleaning and lubing, It’s to know how to check for wear and tear and prolong the life of the bike and There are simple things components. which you can do every week or after every hard ride to keep your bike in Here’s how to Here is how top shape. to go about it.

step 1 Grab your bike and place it in a stable position (we prefer a bike stand)

TOOLS NEEDED - air pump, rag cloth, allen keys, screwdriver, chain length tool, bb torque tool, hands, eyes

step 2 CHECK TIRE PRESSURE – Tire pressure is a very vital factor about how your bike performs and also tire life. Usually the optimum tire pressure is etched on the sidewall of the tires but if you know what kind of riding you do, you know which on the limit to keep to. Harder for tarmac and cross country riding as they offer a lesser rolling

resistance and help you climb and go faster.The pressure should be on the lower side for gravity oriented or dirt jump style riding. Make sure the pressure is never beyond or below the preferred limit. Use a gauge to measure the exact pressure. You may “feel” the pressure, but it can never be accurate.

step 3 CHECK AND CLEAN FORK - Your fork is another important part of your bike. To keep it moving plush and smooth is very vital for performance of the bike and how it feels. Always check your stanchions for rough patches or scratches. If scratched already, means

that the fork is dying out slowly. If not, try to prevent it by keeping the dust seals clean. The dust seals should not have sand or any dirt. Any residue there for a long time begins to scratch the fork stanchions. Cleaning the dust seals after every ride is even better.

step 4 CHECK ALL MAJOR BOLT TORQUE – The bike is held together with bolts. Constant riding may cause some to loosen up and creak. If not paid attention to, these may result to cause fatal accidents.

Always check your bolts to ensure they are secure and firm. The major bolts never to be missed are Headset Bolts and Crankset Bolts. Make sure they are well tightened and all bolts are in place.

step 5 CHECK THE SHIFTING - Gears on the bike do get out of tune from time to time. If you feel that your gears are not

smooth or not working properly, you may go through issue 5, where we show how to adjust the rear derailleur.

step 6 CHECK WHEELSPIN – Wheelspin is how freely your bike’s wheels are spinning. If your wheels face resistance from the hubs or the brake pads, the ride will be slower and will cause the bike to underperform. Spin the wheel and see how freely it spins.

If it stops in a while it means either the brake pads are touching the rotor or the hubs need a replacement or rebuilding. Check the brake pads closely to see any rubbing. If the rotor is good, then it’s the hub that is dead.

TOOLS NEEDED - air pump, rag cloth, allen keys, screwdriver, chain length tool, bb torque tool, hands, eyes

step 7 CHECK AXLE LEVERS AND BOLTS – The wheel axles should be always checked. Make sure they are always in

the “closed” position and have enough torque so that they do not flip open after you shred a rough trail.

TOOLS NEEDED - air pump, rag cloth, allen keys, screwdriver, chain length tool, bb torque tool, hands, eyes

step 8 CHECK REAR SHOCK – If you have a full suspension bike, make sure your linkages are moving without squeaks

or play. Check the shock for proper compression and pressure.

step 9 CHECK CHAIN WEAR – The chain is what drives the bike forward. After sometime the links begin to stretch. The stretch is inevitable as the forces involved are not small. You should check the wear from time to time to

avoid a failure and chain breakage mid ride. Use the chain length measuring tool. The markings on the side indicate the chain stretch. 1 is a brand new chain and 9 is when you NEED to change your chain right away.

step 10 CHECK RIM TRUE – The rims of a mountain bike get out of true very often. Rocks, drops, strains, crashes, there are lots of reasons for a rim to get slightly out of true. Check using the back end of a screwdriver.

If the wheel spins but wobbles near the screwdriver, your rim is out of true. If the spinning is smooth, your rim can take more damage before hitting a truing stand.

step 11 CHECK BRAKES AND BRAKE LEVERS Make a routine check of how the brake levers respond when being used. Check how much the lever retracts when the brake is tapped. If the lever

is depressed more than 50%, the pads need a changing. Make sure the reach on both levers is the same. If not, adjust using the reach adjusters.

step 12 RIDE – Go and feel the smoothness a day of love to your bike can get you.

go shred! TOOLS NEEDED - air pump, rag cloth, allen keys, screwdriver, chain length tool, bb torque tool, hands, eyes




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Details If you are gravity oriented, go for the carve. The shell is an open cell foam compound and comes with inner knee cups, side, shin and over knee protection. Covered with tear resistant Kevlar and aero mesh fabric at the back. Hook and loop straps provide a good grip on the legs.

M att M S: ma TO Ver O PH esum &M




On the trails The carve felt like a second layer of the skin, no digging in, no problems while hiking up or ripping down. The guards stayed in place and felt firm. The knees or elbows were never suffocated and neither did we feel like taking them off after a few runs. No complaints.

Overview Who said gravity armor, could not be comfortable!? The carve is light, not bulky and the comfort is a major plus side. They feel secure enough not to let you down when you go down hard and are comfortable enough to be worn all day at the trails. Pure Gravity protection with comfort!

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Details The flow knee pads are light because of the absence of any hard shell inside. The exterior is covered with a Kevlar coating and the soft shell is made of X-Matter absorbing material. All round construction is of breathable aero-mesh fabric and it has a single hook & loop strap to secure it into place.

On the trails The first thing we noticed while pedaling was that the lack of the thigh strap makes it really comfortable because then the strap does not dig in, moreover there is no loss of grip on the leg. The all-round aero mesh also provides excellent ventilation, keeping those knees and elbows safe and cool.

Overview We did not feel them much at all in the whole day riding enduro trails. Positive aspects are extra comfort during pedaling and breathability. Negative aspects being lack of top-shin and side protection, in case you go down sideways and the frame hits your legs. Perfect pads for enduro and trail riding purposes.

Th e Sin soft g dur le ho pad f Th ing t ok an eels r e a hos ero e c d loo eally goo me limb p st r sh s a p m d on pro ; ake the vid s it kne es am rea e ca azi lly ps; ng c o bre mf ort ath ab ab le ilit y

In search for the Global Cyclist The thing about bike touring is that it takes a long time to move. That’s what makes it difficult to do in the first place, but also what makes it so incredibly valuable as a way to let go, to immerse yourself in your immediate surroundings, and to learn more about the world than you could in almost any other way.

In June of 2012, we landed in Ho Chi Minh City with our Surly Long Haul Truckers in tow and a plan to cycle through every major city between Vietnam and New Delhi.

Text and Photos:

Alex Schuknecht and Rob Tidmore

Our journey was never meant to be a normal bicycle tour. One of the cardinal rules of bike touring is to avoid cities at all costs and seek out the quiet beautiful places. Most bike tourers aim their wheels for a dirt path or quiet road and head directly into the mountains or countryside, where cycling is truly enjoyable and you lose yourself in the beauty of discovery, adventure and movement. With this trip, we threw all that out the window and biked straight into the heart of some of Asia’s biggest, baddest cities.

We felt we were on a mission that was larger than a quest for personal discovery, and we let that mission dictate where we would go. We went to Asia to find the cyclists there, to study bicycle culture - if there was such a thing - and to use this knowledge to imagine the future of some of the worlds’ largest and fastest growing cities. Six months is a long time to bike, and it was made longer by our route; a route full of unpleasant, stressful, and dangerous urban exploration. But we knew that finding the truth about the status of bicycle transportation

meant that we needed the reality of first-hand experience. We brought our bikes through hell and back for that experience, and we don’t regret a day of it. The timing of our trip meant that we arrived in Vietnam at the height of the monsoon season. Throughout SE Asia, the oppressive heat that accompanied the monsoon was our constant companion, and the source of much of our misery. Traffic was the other. We had done some research to prepare for the trip, but we were still taken aback at the sheer human density and traffic that we encountered almost everywhere we went.

In Vietnam, the buzzing of motorbikes became our soundtrack; in China, it was the roar of construction trucks. Fortunately, we found respite from all the noise in a few high altitude sanctuaries: the Bolaven Plateau in Laos, Northwest Vietnam, and the Tibetan Plateau. These came at crucial periods during the trip, and returned us to a mental state that allowed us to survive and appreciate the cities. The beauty of traveling by bicycle is that almost everyone, on some level, understands the bicycle. They can relate to us and the difficulties of bike touring, if not directly then at

least to the challenges of pedaling a bike uphill or in traffic. We found compassion and friendliness everywhere we went, and much of that warmth we felt stemmed from the fact that we were on bikes. It was not uncommon for farmers to hand us food from their day’s harvest on the way back from their fields. We were invited to several Cambodian weddings simply because we happened to pedal by. In Vietnam, a fellow cyclist stopped to buy us coffee on a hot day. And we were offered hot meals and places to stay by families in every single country we visited.

We felt loved, but we made some pretty big errors on the trip. The first was arriving in Vietnam without a single map or compass. We didn’t realize our mistake until we were lost in the Mekong Delta, stranded at a roadway junction wondering which way to turn. We walked over to our bags to grab the compass and then realized with a shock that we had forgotten to bring one! Luckily our parents sent a compass and maps of all 8 countries to us when we hit Bangkok, at which point we were able to navigate, somewhat. What we learned on our tour surprised us.

We came to Asia because the culture and infrastructure that supports cyclists in these cities are still relatively unstudied and unknown where we’re from. We hoped to see what massive cities like yours were doing to encourage clean, healthy modes of transportation in the face of the world’s fastest urban population growth, and maybe these would be lessons that we could bring back home. But what we found, more often than not, is that city governments are doing nothing; some are even banning cycling. The state of bicycle transportation in Asia is bad, and getting

worse. There’s a lot of poor urban planning and an underlying cultural disposition against cyclists that makes increasing urban cycling seem like an insurmountable problem. Despite all the obstacles there are so many stories of hope and possibilities for change. Because cycling is such a personal choice, this hope lies overwhelmingly in the hands of the people; you, me, us. Passionate cyclists are forming groups, making changes. In every single city we visited we found growing numbers of cycling groups, cycling advocates, bike shops and cycle tourism.

The more visible and passionate these little microcultures become, the more hope there is that cities will become livable and healthy, and the more hope we can have for our global environment.

We believe in its power to create community in otherwise stratified cultures, to create healthier, happier people, and to make cities an enjoyable place to live.

If the whole world isn’t watching the exploding urbanization of Asia with a bit of terror, they should be. And if there’s one thing anyone can do to encourage more people to live, and move, sustainably, it’s riding a bike.

To put it simply, cycling promotes life. And after 6 months in the saddle, we can say with confidence that it is the best hope for a world that is urbanizing more rapidly than at any time in history. We inhabit an incredible world, but it needs a world of improvement.

We rode 8,800km across the Asian continent because we believe in cycling.

So pedal on fellow cyclists, we’re with you.

Adventure Center Kaprun The one and only mountainbike school in the region Zell am See Kaprun

Freeridebiking in Kaprun roots and tight switchbacks Bikeschool flow down the mountain.

The region Zell am See Kaprun has a long mountainbike tradition. Several World Cups and the World Championships were hostet here. After that the mountainbikers disapered. Fortunately, since 2006 moutainbiking retrieved to be a hot theme in Kaprun. In 2007 the Maiskogel was the first mountain which opened gravelroads for uphill bikers. A year later freeride and endurobikers were allowed to enjoy the trails on the Maiskogel. The gondola brings you up on an altitude of 1.545 meters. Three natural trails with rocks,

In 2012 three new freeride trails opened on the Kitzsteinhorn. The trail from the Alpinecenter (2.450 meters) down to the valley is almost 12 km long. The GeiĂ&#x;steintrail offers a lot of speed, some berms and numerous smaller jumps. The WĂźstlau Trail is a technical trail with thight curves, turns, rocks and roots. The Bachlertrail, also reachable from the Maiskogel, is completely natural and easy to ride. This trail is perfect for beginners.

The Adventure Center Kaprun ist the only bike school in Kaprun. Helmut Schneider and his two colleagues Tim and Tom run the bike school since the summer 2012. The Adventure Center offers guided Biketours for adults, kids and families as well as freeride courses on the Maiskogel and the Kitzsteinhorn. Beginners learn the basics in a training park in the valley. After this short training session they go up with the Maiskogelseilbahn and ride a easy wide gravelroad down. Inbetween the gravel road they can try their

skills on some easy singletrails. speed. After the warm-up ride the more difficult lines will be Intermediate and experienced explored. The guide helps the freeride bikers ride in small guest to find the perfect line, groups on the Maiskogel or the gives helpful tips and reveals Kitzsteinhorn. The Bachlertrail secret trails. and the GeiĂ&#x;steintrail are popular warm-up trails and per- Because of the big variety of fect to practice short switch- trails in Kaprun, the Adventure backs and to get used to the Center does not only offer free

ride courses for adults, children are also more than welcome in the bike school. With lots of funny games in the trainingpark kids will be prepared to ride down the freeridetrails. Adventure Center Helmut Schneider Augasse 5 5710 Kaprun Ă–sterreich +43 6547 7562 +43 650 31 60 322 Press: Tim Dehing +43 699 12 35 97 56

Mesum Verma and I have known each other for about three years now, ironically I never got the chance to actually meet him in person. Last time when he was in India, I was in bed resting an injury

and could not travel to north India to meet him up. Finally, this summer, I made a trip to Nanjing, China to meet the man in person, to ride and to have fun.

Riding bikes, baking in the sun, and having fun were the daytime activities. Drinking beer, fooseball, bowling, or pool was what we did once the sun set.

The chopsticks were tricky to master, so I just got myself a burger. Work Hard, Play Harder!! Got inked in Nanjing!!! Ride, Work, Party, Repeat!!!

Awesome People, Awesome Trails, Awesome Places!! Méi nǚ.. 霉女 brrrrrr brrrrrr

PEOPLE carmen freeman rey

matt macdonald

sven martin

christoph malin

ale di lullo

alex & rob


michael muller

Daniel roos

deng yu

rakesh oswal

matt wragg

michele mondini

Director: Mesum Verma

Editor in Chief: Prateek Singh

Deputy Editor: Fabian Mitterhauser

About Issue 007 - SEP / 2013 / info: /


Carmen Freeman - Rey, Rakesh Oswal, Alex Schulknecht, Rob Tidmore, Prateek Singh


Mesum Verma, Prateek Singh (Ideas)


Mesum Verma, Carmen Freeman - Rey, Matt MacDonald, Michael Müller, Daniel Roos, Julien Barety, Christoph Malin, Fred Bonnefoy, Deng Yu, Lars Scharl, Rakesh Oswal, Rob Jones, Sven Martin, Armin M. Küstenbrück, Michele Mondini, Ale Di Lullo, Alex Schulknecht, Rob Tidmore, Matt Wragg, David Malacrida, Prateek Singh


Prateek Singh:

Special thanks to:

Praveen Kumar Singh, Bastian Dietz, Kunal Singh, Ajit Gandhi, Robin & Max Schmitt, Manne Schmitt, Wu Xin Jie (Wylie), Matt MacDonald, Marco Hofer, Tarek Rasouli, Sita Subramanian, Lars Wich, Johannes Grund


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